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MPS lifts mask mandate, updates COVID-19 protocols
Wednesday, February 23, 2022 3:30 PM

Minneapolis COVID-19 rates have declined significantly from highs we experienced last year, as have hospitalizations related to COVID-19. Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released an updated framework for how we understand and respond to the risks and impacts of COVID-19 in our communities. 

In response to these changes, beginning on April 18, 2022, MPS is updating COVID-19 health and safety practices related to face coverings/masks, quarantine lengths and contact tracing.

Face Coverings/Masks

MPS will lift its face covering/mask mandate for all schools and buildings, including school bus transportation. Staff/students can choose to wear a mask based on personal preference or level of risk.

MPS will follow the CDC data tracker, continuing to monitor COVID levels in Hennepin County.  MPS will revisit a mask mandate if the infection levels move to the medium or high range in the county.  We will also continue to consult with the City of Minneapolis and could initiate a mask mandate at a school where an outbreak occurs.

Contact Tracing

Minneapolis Public Schools will discontinue universal contact tracing. As a result, families will not necessarily receive notice if someone in their student’s class, athletics team, bus or other extracurricular activity has tested positive for COVID-19. 

This change will allow students who have had to quarantine on multiple occasions to remain in school, particularly those who have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19, most often students of color, pre-K students and students receiving special education. 

Quarantine Lengths for Close Contact Exposure

  • There will be no quarantine period for fully vaccinated students and/or boosted adults exposed to COVID-19. 
  • The quarantine period for unvaccinated or partially vaccinated students/adults exposed to COVID-19 will change to 5 days (from 10 days) with qualifiers per public health guidelines with masks required for Days 6-10.
  • The isolation period for adults and students who tested positive for COVID-19 remains at 10 days. 

MPS will continue to review and evaluate data in regard to COVID-19, including continued regular meetings with our COVID-19 Regional Support team. Visit the MPS webpage on the strategies and tools MPS has used to successfully limit the spread of COVID-19 infections. 

Thank you for all the work you’ve done to support and keep safe our students and families over the past two years. We know COVID-19 isn’t gone forever, but we are hopeful that our community is entering a lull in the pandemic – something we all welcome. MPS remains committed to maximizing in-person learning, meeting the academic and mental health needs of our students, and providing a safe learning environment for all.

Families and staff can refer to the COVID-19 dashboard for the latest information about COVID-19 cases in your school and at the district level. And please remember, keep students home when they are ill. 

Thank you for helping us keep the MPS community safe and healthy.